As Carnival Cruise Lines welcomes Mardi Gras, its first ship powered by liquid natural gas, to Port Canaveral this Friday morning, every business sector that supports the cruise industry, as well as eager passengers, welcome the resumption of cruising in the United States this summer. Celebrity Cruises will offer the first cruise ship conducting passenger operations since the shut-down, with Celebrity EDGE set to sail on June 26th, 2021 from Port Everglades. Terminal security services “...
The new FLEXIDOME IP starlight 8000i X series cameras offer enhanced image quality for low-light scenes and fast-moving objects, thanks to two resolution offerings of 2- or 4-megapixels and next-level HDR X and starlight X technologies. HDR X and Starlight X technologies HDR X enables the cameras to optimise video capture in scenes with fast-moving objects with a dynamic range up to 144 dB, ensuring perfect exposure, while reducing motion-related artefacts and blur in the daytime. The new Star...
Globally renowned sensor solutions specialist, HENSOLDT has successfully passed the Factory Acceptance Test of its new airborne multi-mission surveillance radar, PrecISR. In an online demonstration conducted, the PrecISR 1000 airborne multi-mission surveillance radar proved its capabilities to the customer, QinetiQ GmbH, an international provider of airborne special missions operations, based out of Möchengladbach, in Germany. PrecISR 1000 airborne multi-mission surveillance radar The ra...
Sensor Solution specialist, HENSOLDT is strengthening its avionics business by re-naming its subsidiary EUROAVIONICS GmbH, located in Pforzheim, Germany and addressing the avionics market under the unified brand name, HENSOLDT Avionics. The strategic move is driven by a new management team led by the Managing Directors, André Hinueber and Dieter Buchdrucker. EUROAVIONICS GmbH has been part of HENSOLDT Group since 2017. Interfaces for third-party avionics and sensors “HENSOLDT Avi...
HENSOLDT UK are pleased to announce the launch of SPEXER 600 multi-mission, X-Band ground-based surveillance radar utilising SharpEye solid-state transceiver technology. Building upon the excellent pedigree of well-established HENSOLDT products and technologies, SPEXER 600 complements the SPEXER family of Active Electronically Scanned Array or AESA radars, offering a cost-effective and truly crew portable field deployable solution. Design and function Designed to meet user requirements to det...
Finbarr Solutions, a foremost global security & risk management consultancy, announced the launch of free face-to-face video consultations with a member of the Register of Chartered Security Professionals. The service is available to any organisation that would benefit from expert independent advice, regarding their security requirements and systems, manning levels and/or security postures. Assess security provision The Register of Chartered Security Professionals was established under a...
Leonardo has recently proven the newly-expanded capabilities of its ULISSES acoustic anti-submarine warfare (ASW) system in a demonstration off the coast of Italy. During the demo, Leonardo showed how the Firefly, AQS-18, dipping sonar from L3Harris Technologies worked in concert with the ULISSES processor to automatically locate simulated enemy submarines and alert the crew to their presence. Firefly sonar integration with ULISSES system The demonstration follows the successful integration of the Firefly dipping sonar with the ULISSES system. Firefly has incorporated high-powered active sonar that can dive down up to 200 metres below the sea surface and detect targets as far away as 20 miles, while transmitting sonar and sonobuoy processing, audio and video to the shore via a wideband data link. For the demo, the ULISSES and Firefly equipment was installed on a naval vessel, while an Italian Navy NH-90 helicopter was supported by dispensing sonobuoys during the trial. ULISSES acoustic anti-submarine warfare system A key design feature of the ULISSES/Firefly system is its lightweight form factor A key design feature of the ULISSES/Firefly system is its lightweight form factor, which can also be fitted to small, light helicopters for littoral operations. The integrated capabilities shown in the demo represent a solution to the growing requirement from armed forces to conduct ASW operations in blue and shallow waters. Observers on-board the command ship were able to watch on an operator’s screen as ULISSES acoustic anti-submarine warfare (ASW) system combined inputs from the Firefly dipping sonar with data from active and passive sonobuoys to automatically locate potential contacts and raise alerts. Multi-static functionality The ULISSES and Firefly systems offer ‘multi-static’ functionality where the processors collect and exploit data from up to 64 distributed dipping sonar and sonobuoy sensors, using the multiple sources of information to accurately triangulate the location of enemy submarines. ULISSES was introduced to the market at Farnborough International Airshow in 2018 and was successfully demonstrated in a live sea trial in November 2019. The system is now fully developed and talks are on-going with a range of potential launch customers. Highly-advanced capabilities The successor to Leonardo’s well-regarded OTS-90 acoustic system for Italian and Dutch NH-90 helicopters, ULISSES provides highly-advanced capabilities in an even more lightweight package. This makes it ideally suited to smaller helicopters and is designed as a form-fit replacement for the OTS-90, making it an attractive proposition for the retrofit market. The system is also suitable for fixed-wing aircraft, naval vessels and, without the dipping sonar, drone aircraft.
Following the release of FLIR United Video Management System 9.0 (United VMS) in August 2020, FLIR announced the global availability of United VMS 9.0.1 with new advanced features. The latest platform update offers further streamlined access to system status and alarms around the clock for security teams to react to threat activities faster while enjoying improved reporting and cybersecurity functionality. Included advancements The advancements include updates to the FLIR Latitude VMS Software as well as Horizon and FLIR Meridian Network Video Recorders (NVR), featuring: The ability to access video and alarms from anywhere at any time using EZ Client for mobile devices, the FLIR web-based, feature-rich application Streamlined control centre operations with Quick View, the new optimised video scene tracking capability Access to system events for improved cybersecurity within the United VMS reporting tool, as well as the sign-off reporting and the capability to produce custom reports Additional bug fixes and other general software enhancements Enhancing the Health Monitor tool The United VMS 9.0.1 updates enhance the Health Monitor tool improvements that were launched with United VMS 9.0, which proactively monitors system health and alerts security personnel to issues before downtime occurs. This offers the ability to securely access video assets to receive event alerts anywhere and anytime, improves efficiency, and increases peace of mind. Supporting cameras and VMS Through an open platform solution, the system efficiently supports various visible cameras, thermal cameras, radars, and a combination of all three. Further, United VMS can accurately match any size installation while improving cost efficiencies through scalability and centralised management—no matter if the system supports a single location or multiple sites across the globe. The United VMS pricing structure provides extensive flexibility for deployment, including customisable software service agreements for simplified business continuity, further enabling critical facilities to make the most of this open platform solution while future-proofing its security system. Download for free Customers that previously purchased United VMS 9.0 can now download the update to United VMS 9.0.1 for free, other existing customers can contact FLIR support to get their system upgraded.
The video-based fire detection Aviotec IP starlight 8000 from Bosch can now be used in environments without visible light. With the help of newly developed AI algorithms for video analytics, Aviotec's firmware version 7.72 is now able to reliably detect smoke and flames even with pure infrared lighting. Up to now, it was already possible with Aviotec to reliably detect flames and smoke in difficult lighting conditions down to a minimum of 2 Lux. Expanded field of application There are many applications in dark environments in which the new version of Aviotec offers an optimal solution for customers. Wherever there is a high fire hazard or a high fire load, for example in logistics and production, Aviotec in combination with IR-lighting is a suitable fire protection system to detect fires as they occur. Operators of warehouses that contain packaging material and are not illuminated at night or warehouses that have no lighting at all can benefit from this, for example, so that the risk of fire is significantly reduced from the outset due to lack of electricity. Power-over-Ethernet (PoE) Power-over-Ethernet (PoE) does not require the installation of power lines for Aviotec. In conjunction with IR lighting, Aviotec's new firmware version also reduces the risk of fire in industries that work in two shifts and do not use conventional lighting at night. Aviotec also offers a reliable solution for aircraft hangars, where visible interior lighting has been deliberately omitted for reasons of burglary protection outside working hours. The same applies to archives with particularly valuable documents and correspondingly high fire load. In all these cases, Aviotec ensures a particularly fast and reliable fire detection, since fires can be detected directly at the source of the fire without the need for the smoke to reach a fire detector. Video-based fire detection Aviotec can be used in almost all areas of fire protection, whether in daylight or poor lighting conditions "From daylight to poor lighting conditions to situations where there is no visible light at all - since the market launch of Aviotec in 2016, we have continuously been setting new benchmarks in video-based fire detection,” comments Soeren Wittmann, Product Manager at Bosch Building Technologies. "This means that this promising technology can now be used in almost all areas of fire protection." Additional benefits of video surveillance and analysis The intelligent video analytics is directly integrated into Aviotec. In all environments, the installed cameras can be used simultaneously for fire detection and video surveillance, further reducing the installation and operating costs considerably. VdS and CSIRO TS010 certified solution As the first solution for video-based fire detection, Aviotec has already passed the demanding test procedure of VdS Schadenverhütung GmbH in 2018. Not only functionality and reliability were confirmed, but also the high immunity against false alarms. In addition, Aviotec IP starlight 8000 received certification according to the Australian standard CSIRO TS010 for video-based fire detection systems in April 2019. The firmware version 7.72 of Aviotec IP starlight 8000 is now available. Operators of existing Aviotec solutions can upgrade their system to the new version by a free firmware update.
Security personnel must be able to quickly detect unauthorised vehicles and individuals at critical infrastructure sites. Without intrusion detection, entities like electrical substations can be subject to physical attacks. 88 percent of substations experience at least one break-in every year and 10 percent see more than 20 intrusions in the same time frame, according to CIGRE, a global electricity industry organisation. To safeguard remote substations from external threats, electric utilities are relying on durable thermal cameras for superior monitoring and protection. Remote substation security The failure of a key substation caused by a security breach would have a debilitating effect on homeowners, businesses and mission-critical infrastructure. While physical security is a top priority for utilities, designing, installing and operating a perimeter system requires skill. Remote location, limited network connectivity, minimal lighting, internal security audits, and compliance with North American Electric Reliability Corporation are some of the challenges that both substation security directors and system integrators face. Perimeter Intrusion Detection System (PIDS) Since its arrival on the mainstream security scene a few decades ago, thermal security cameras have quickly become the optimal solution for remote substation perimeter security, due to their ability to monitor perimeters day and night in adverse weather conditions as well as in harsh environments.Thermal cameras measure the minute differences in heat signatures emitted by objects and people to produce high-contrast images and reliable intrusion detection. They enable security personnel to detect an intruder before they ever reach the perimeter for early intervention. Sensor quality FLIR's perimeter cameras offer the widest selection of lenses and detection ranges, adaptable to both large and small deployments As the industry front-runner in advanced thermal technology, FLIR provides the best sensor quality available. FLIR’s total security solution featuring a diverse suite of perimeter cameras offers the widest selection of lenses and detection ranges, adaptable to both large and small deployments. FLIR’s track record of success is just one of the reasons why utilities choose FLIR cameras time and again. Design recommendations When deploying thermal cameras at substations, there are several factors to consider to optimise performance. Here are some tips from the FLIR experts.Identify What One Needs to Protect: Assess the substation’s unique needs, define one's threats, and determine which area one needs to monitor. For rural or small substations miles away from the nearest city, position one's cameras so one has a solid view of the outside perimeter. If anyone approaches, one wants to have ample warning. For substations in urban areas that are next to public lands and walkways, it may not be cost-effective to look out as pedestrians can easily generate nuisance alerts. In these scenarios, thermal cameras that survey the interior of the substation may be the better option. Make the Most of Existing Infrastructure: Thermal cameras must be mounted at a minimum of 12-15 feet above the ground. However, some substation fences are only 6-8 feet tall. In this case, consider mounting cameras on telephone poles or tower structures. Utilising these existing structures instead of digging new trenches can save one both time and money. Select the Right Camera for your Application: For small substations that are less than an acre, deploying a couple of FLIR Elara™ FC-Series ID cameras, which feature onboard analytics, along the fence line will often do the trick. For short to mid-range needs, the FLIR Elara FB-Series is a great, economical option. Install a visible camera or a camera that provides both thermal and optical imagers, like FLIR Saros™ DH-390 Dome at the gate, to monitor general traffic. For larger substations (around two acres) that are high-value sites, consider deploying a mix of FLIR FC-Series ID cameras with the FLIR Saros™ DM-Series to cover the fence line. Additionally, mount a pan-tilt camera with both visible and thermal streams, such as the FLIR Elara™ DX-Series or FLIR Triton™ PT-Series, to look around the perimeter for superior monitoring and threat assessment. Choose the accurate software As a final consideration, choose the right software to streamline management, operations, and functionality. For large applications where customers need to manage surveillance, access control, radar, and other disparate systems on one platform, consider command and control software. For enterprise-level surveillance operations, a video management system is optimal and for small applications using just a few cameras, a network video recorder is sufficient. Regardless of the size of the project, partner with an expert team that can help assess, design, installs and program the right system for one's application.
FLIR Systems, Inc. has announced the release of Raymarine YachtSense, an advanced digital control system affording total command and complete awareness of a vessel’s electrical systems. The modular nature of the YachtSense system redefines the future of vessel automation for boat builders and technical installers. Raymarine YachtSense Engineered for reliability, flexibility, and ease-of-use, FLIR Systems’ Raymarine YachtSense offers a scalable, customisable and failsafe marine automation solution through intuitive control of onboard systems via any Raymarine Axiom multifunction display. YachtSense employs a unique, modular architecture that allows boat builders the freedom to design and standardise digital control solutions that are scalable across their entire model range. Each YachtSense system begins with the YachtSense Master Module and Power Supply Module and is completed with a combination of additional multi-channel signal modules. These individual modules interface with specific types of onboard devices and systems, from lighting, pumps, windlass, swim platforms and entertainment systems to climate control, generators, and other on-vessel mechanical systems. Customised Axiom user interface YachtSense is the new standard in premium digital control solution for today’s most sophisticated vessel" YachtSense’s customised Axiom user interface options empower marine manufacturers and installers to create modern and elegant vessel automation solutions. These give captains total control of every onboard system with simple, touchscreen operation from any Axiom multi-function display. “YachtSense is the new standard in premium digital control solution for today’s most sophisticated vessels,” said Gregoire Outters, General Manager for the Raymarine brand at FLIR Systems. Smart, modular and expandable system Gregoire adds, “Our smart, modular and expandable system gives total freedom to boat builders to design ultra-reliable and highly tailored solutions that best meet the individual needs of their specific vessels and customers.” Engineered to offer total peace of mind even during unexpected events, Raymarine YachtSense provides three levels of electrical redundancy. Master Modules feature an integrated keypad for manual override, as well as an LCD for system diagnostics. All YachtSense modules are housed in rugged IPX6 waterproof enclosures and are backed by a three-year warranty.
AVIOTEC's front-line technology offers flame and smoke detection for locations with no light. Thanks to separate additional infrared illumination unlit applications can be monitored with video-based fire detection delivering pin-sharp images. During the daytime, the device shows coloured pictures and shifts to monochrome night mode when visibility drops below a pre-defined level. When daylight returns it automatically switches back to colour mode. The video-based fire detection AVIOTEC IP starlight 8000 is now delivered with the new firmware. Existing installations can be upgraded to the new technology by a free firmware update. Flame and smoke detection Video-based fire detection is now also an option for applications where there is no lighting available. Due to infrared illumination less, light sources need to be installed e.g., for nighttime surveillance reducing the fire load and energy costs noticeably. In environments with no light AVIOTEC IP starlight 8000 working in monochrome mode can now perform both: fire detection and remote optical verification. Integrated day and night switch Day/night switch ensures reliable fire detection and video surveillance and provides time to solve the failure of light sources If the visible illumination fails, i.e., in tunnels, it is important to ensure that video-based fire detection is working uninterruptedly and that staff members in monitoring centers still have all the necessary insights into the situation. The integrated day and night switch ensures reliable fire detection and video surveillance. It gives operators enough time to solve the failure of light sources. This saves time-consuming and error-prone human investigation. Full redundant 24/7 illumination is not required anymore. Unobtrusive video surveillance with IR During night-time, burglars cannot spy on possible intrusion targets due to missing visible light or light sources while fire detection can be ensured. No visible illumination is used and helps to prevent burglary and arson. Combined intelligent video analytic rules also allow to track down intruders without visible light. Next to 24/7 fire detection, the new AVIOTEC version enables 24/7 intelligent video analytics for comprehensive safety solutions.
The term ‘marine’ comes from the Latin mare, meaning sea or ocean, and marine habitats can be divided into two categories: coastal and open ocean. Video surveillance (VS) applications can cover both types of marine environment with system for ships, maritime ports, onshore and offshore installations, etc. We should want to further analyse VS for ships and try to explain the types of ships on which it can be used, the ways in which VS can be used on ships, the typical certifications in use and what features a camera station must have to be installed on a ship. Starting with ships that have a minimum tonnage, around the world we have: liquefied natural gas (LNG) tankers, passengers ships, chemical tankers, crude oil tankers, container ships, general cargo ships and bulk carriers.As the LNG market grows rapidly, the fleet of LNG carriers continues to experience tremendous growth, offering more opportunities for VS Video surveillance for all marine vessels An LNG carrier is a tank ship designed for transporting liquefied natural gas. As the LNG market grows rapidly, the fleet of LNG carriers continues to experience tremendous growth. A passenger ship is a merchant ship whose primary function is to carry passengers by sea. This category does not include cargo vessels which have accommodation for a limited number of passengers, but rather includes the likes of ferries, yachts, ocean liners and cruise ships. A chemical tanker is a type of tank ship designed to transport chemicals in bulk. These ships can also carry other types of sensitive cargo which require a high standard of tank cleaning, such as palm oil, vegetable oils, tallow, caustic soda and methanol. An oil tanker, also known as a petroleum tanker, is a merchant ship designed for the bulk transport of oil. There are two basic types of oil tankers: crude tankers and product tankers. Crude tankers move large quantities of unrefined crude oil from its point of extraction to refineries. Product tankers, generally much smaller, are designed to move refined products from refineries to points near consuming markets. Container ships are cargo ships that carry their entire load in truck-size intermodal containers: a technique called containerisation. They are a common means of commercial intermodal freight transport and now carry most seagoing non-bulk cargo. Today, about 90% of non-bulk cargo worldwide is transported by container. A cargo ship or freighter ship is any sort of ship or vessel that carries cargo, goods and materials from one port to another. Cargo ships are specially designed for the task, often being equipped with cranes and other mechanisms to load and unload, and come in all sizes. Bulk carriers make up 15%–17% of the world's merchant ships and they are specially designed to transport unpackaged bulk cargo such as grains, coal, ore and cement in its cargo holds. For all these ships the protection of vessels, cargo and crew is a priority, that’s why the adoption of VS technology plays a key part in terms of security and safety. Human error is regularly named as a major factor in ship accidents, and one way to avoid it is to aid seafarers by providing them with technology and equipment that is reliable and easy to use in all weather and sea conditions. Marine VS encompasses liquefied natural gas (LNG) tankers, passengers ships, chemical tankers, crude oil tankers, container ships, general cargo ships and bulk carriers Emergency security solutions on ship One of the most important applications for camera stations is during “docking”. Mooring is the securing or confining of a vessel in a particular location with a fixed or a floating object (jetty, pier, ship, barge, buoy, etc.) as various cargo operations are carried out. Docking is the final stage of mooring operations when the ship docks to the jetty. This is a very delicate operation and cameras are very helpful in making sure docking is done without accidents.'Man overboard’ is an emergency in which a person has fallen off a boat or ship into the water, and can happen at any time during the day or night Another important application for camera stations is the Man Overboard detection system (MOB). ‘Man overboard’ is an emergency in which a person has fallen off a boat or ship into the water. Man overboard events can happen at any time during the day or night, in all types of weather and sea conditions, and from almost any location on the ship, ranging from a few tens of feet above the water, to over 180 feet. When these events occur, the immediate availability of important data is crucial. Accurate confirmation of the event including time of occurrence, location on the ship and location in the sea is critical. A proactive detection system must immediately and accurately detect man overboard events and provide prompt, actionable data to response personnel. A typical man overboard detection system can report a MOB event in under 1 second. VS on a vessel can also monitor the engine room at all times and provide a good view of people working on dock, machinery and stowed equipment. But what are the most important features that a camera station must have to work in one of the most aggressive environments in nature? Marine surveillance must operate in one of the most harsh environments in nature Ruggedised reliability in surveillance First of all, and perhaps it’s obvious, but it’s extremely important to have camera stations with amazing reliability. Housing units manufactured from AISI 316L stainless steel, passivated and electropolished, makes the cameras completely impervious to air, water, rusting and corrosion, therefore offering excellent weather protection and increased reliability. Housing units manufactured from AISI 316L stainless steel, passivated and electropolished, makes the cameras completely impervious to air, water, rusting and corrosion Sometimes ships also use cameras constructed entirely from technopolymer, which guarantees high impact resistance and superior protection from external weather agents. Keeping the camera glass clean at all times is another essential feature, and it can be done via a wiper/wash system that greatly reduces the need for maintenance. In the case of PTZ cameras, the best option would be a great pan and tilt speed (up to 100°/s). What is the operative temperature range for the cameras? Sea is everywhere and therefore ships go everywhere, from the Arctic Ocean to the Mediterranean, so we need cameras that have to be fully operational across a wide temperature range. -40°C to +65°C covers almost all areas. Analogue or IP Cameras? Actually, both options can be used, especially for applications like docking where it’s important to avoid image delay (as can happen with IP cameras due to the natural latency of data communication over a network). Marine certifications Last but not least, the certifications: Certifications guarantee the quality and reliability of camera stations. There is no compromise! One important certification is the Lloyd’s Register Type Approval which subjects cameras to rigorous testing for performance, vibration (critical on ships), humidity, etc. The application field of the LR Type Approval is VS in public places (e.g. passenger ships), open decks, enclosed spaces that are subjected to heat generated from other equipment, and technical premises. Often, VS cameras used in specific areas of ships, such as hazardous areas, are required to have ATEX and IECEX certifications.
As the technology in omnidirectional cameras continues to improve, they are becoming increasingly more affordable to a wider segment of the video surveillance market Just a few years ago, omnidirectional cameras were a novelty. Today, however, this technology has taken the leap to the mainstream. Think about how ubiquitous Google’s Street View is, and you can gain a better idea of the power of omnidirectional cameras. Even consumers are starting to see many forms of omnidirectional cameras, from 360-degree lenses on SLRs to 360-degree video from action cameras. To that end, 360-degree cameras represent one of the strongest areas of growth in surveillance technology, with global unit shipments forecasted by IHS to increase by more than 60 percent year-on-year. Omnidirectional vs. traditional cameras Both 360- and 180-degree surveillance cameras offer panoramic views, helping reduce the number of traditional narrow field-of-view cameras needed in a single installation. Omnidirectional cameras can also be used in concert with PTZ cameras, or replace them entirely depending on the application. Not only does this help increase situational awareness, it decreases the overall cost of the cameras, installation and maintenance. Compared to PTZ cameras, omnidirectional cameras have the advantage of being able to pan, tilt and zoom around in both live, as well as stored video, which means operators can pinpoint problems in real-time, ensuring incidents can be resolved quickly and efficiently, and at the same time, go back to stored 360-degree video to conduct investigations. The option for 180- and 360-degree coverage from a single camera is delivered via a specialised lens on one sensor or a camera that integrates with multiple sensors with conventional lenses aligned to provide an ultra-wide-angle coverage. Single-lens or “fisheye” cameras use a specialised lens called a fisheye lens, which, when compared to a conventional lens, employs different optical design techniques that can lead to the distortion of the captured image when viewing beyond a 90-degree horizontal field-of-view. With this, “barrel distortion” can occur, where a circular image is created and a straight line within the captured image appears curved. ‘Dewarping’ software has to be used to correct this optical illusion. As a consequence of lens design idiosyncrasies in 180- and 360-degree fisheye cameras, either an oval or circular shaped imaged is created. Since image sensors used in surveillance cameras are square or rectangular, some parts of the sensor are not used. Increasingly affordable solutions As the technology in these types of cameras continues to improve, they are becoming increasingly more affordable to a wider segment of the video surveillance market. Similarly, higher resolutions and more affordable storage for video data make it more affordable to get increased amounts of coverage and detail at the same time. As mentioned previously, cost savings can also be realised when a single 360-degree camera replaces three to four fixed cameras, a result that can be recreated in other areas or departments within an organisation to help realise additional cost savings. Fisheye vs. multi-sensor Fisheye and multi-sensor cameras both create panoramic images, but do so in very different ways. Fisheye cameras capture the whole scene in a single view without having to stitch images, so the full view of the captured video footage has consistent brightness, sharpness and contrast across the entire scene. Fisheye cameras also offer a number of other benefits: higher reliability as a result of a single sensor, camera and lens arrangement; no blind spots; fixed focus, making installation quicker; lower cost; and a smaller, less obtrusive form factor. Additionally, the dewarping of the image is carried out in the video management system or network video recorder, allowing for higher frame rates at any given bandwidth. Omnidirectional cameras can pan, tilt and zoom around in both live and stored video, which means operators can pinpoint problems in real-time However, fisheye cameras may have fewer pixels per foot, depending on the total resolution, and these types of cameras require client-side dewarping to gain the full benefits of retrospective image adjustment – that is, dewarping of stored video for investigations. Multi-sensor cameras, on the other hand, may offer a higher total resolution depending on the individual resolution of each of the sensors within the camera. Here, dewarping is not required since each sensor is, in essence, a narrow field-of-view camera. Multi-sensor cameras, however, have more than one sensor, which can lead to an overall higher maintenance costs, and with four or more cameras needed to cover a specific area, there is an increased risk that one or more of the sensors can malfunction — in essence, lower reliability. Installation of multi-sensor cameras is also more complicated and more time-intensive. Additionally, the units themselves can be large and bulky, and complex to operator and manage — each view has to be stitched together, which means captured images have to be carefully calibrated with the correct brightness, colour, contrast and sharpness for the image to be as clear and seamless as it needs to be for viewing and evidentiary purposes. Other possible considerations include: additional licensing fees for each camera connected to an NVR or VMS, total frame rate is generally lower and bandwidth usage will be high. Also, storage costs are higher. As businesses look to increase situational awareness by investing in omnidirectional cameras, it’s important to carefully evaluate the technology being implemented and various options before moving forward with an implementation Dewarping images If a camera sends a 360-degree image, the VMS software has to dewarp the image so that users can get normal views while electronically PTZ’ing around in the image. This is called “client-side” dewarping. With client-side dewarping, images can be dewarped retrospectively — that is, stored video can be dewarped, enabling users to forensically analyse a scene after the fact. The result is that investigations can be carried on as if the video were being watched in real time, making the data indispensable to investigators examining the details of a crime or security breach. Not only does this approach deliver new levels of situational awareness, but it also allows officials to use the data to examine additional areas of interest. The virtual PTZ function can only be experienced via client-side dewarping for stored video, and it can also be run on still images. Additionally, different parts of the image might be useful for different applications that are hard to predict in advance. For example, a merchandiser may want to zoom in and look at signage or an end cap after the fact to gain better insight into the business. Client-side dewarping may also be run on mobile devices, on either live or on stored video. One challenge of client-side dewarping is that VMS and NVR platforms have to support this function. There are already a large number of platforms that support this functionality because of end user demand. On the other hand, camera-side dewarping does not require a VMS/NVR platform to integrate this function. Camera-side dewarping means you can only virtually PTZ around in a live scene, which is the same as using a motorised PTZ camera – and this function requires an operator to manually navigate and record what the camera sees. Once these views are fixed, a user may only see those views in stored footage, severely limiting the possibility of being able to capture a wider scene for analysis. This means there may be more blind spots in live and stored video depending on how the views are configured. Evaluating technology implemented As businesses look to increase situational awareness by investing in omnidirectional cameras, it’s important to carefully evaluate the technology being implemented and various options before moving forward with an implementation. There are a number of pros and cons to dewarping software and the views within the cameras to consider. But, with higher resolutions and more efficient dewarping/stitching technologies, omnidirectional cameras may soon replace narrow field-of-view and PTZ cameras in a number of vertical markets, including transportation, retail, education, banking and finance, maritime, leisure and gaming, ushering in a new era of total situational awareness with a wealth of data and insight yet untapped.
Stowaway incidents in the last two months in the United Kingdom have dramatised the desperate nature of individual attempts to cross borders. They have also exposed the callous methods of human traffickers. Sixty-eight foreign nationals were discovered in four lorries at the port of Harwich on the south coast of England in June after the vehicles had disembarked from a Stena Line ferry entering English waters from Holland. None of the group, which included 15 children and two pregnant women, sustained significant injuries, but seven were taken to hospital. They had been allegedly hiding among washing machines, and four Polish truck drivers are under arrest on suspicion of facilitating an attempt at illegal immigration. The incident has parallels with the discovery of 35 Afghan Sikh migrants in a container at the nearby Tilbury Docks in August 2014 and the horrifying memory of 15 years ago when 58 Chinese people died in a lorry at the port of Dover in Kent. Early detection So what equipment is available from the physical security industry to deter stowaways and, at worst, to detect them at the earliest point of their attempted journey, be it in cargo vessel containers, in lorries within ferries, inside aircraft and even on the underside of aircraft? I mention this final bizarre method since, literally as I type, authorities at London Heathrow Airport have found a stowaway within the undercarriage of a plane that has travelled the 8,000 miles from Johannesburg. He has survived the journey (which would have involved temperatures as low as –60 degrees C or –76 degrees F) but is in a critical condition. Another stowaway was found dead on the roof of a building below the Heathrow flight path. Police are refusing to link the incidents as yet but the weight of evidence suggests they are related. Perimeter fencing may have been breached in the case of the plane stowaways who must somehow have accessed the restricted “airside” area of O.R. Tambo International Airport near Johannesburg. But perimeter protection can be discounted as irrelevant to the Harwich seaport incidents since it appears likely that the drivers accused of abetting the sea-bound migrants allowed them to enter the vehicles, and did so prior to the ship leaving the port. Low-energy x-ray scanning, typically using a 300kV source, is one of many practical techniques that even allow drivers and passengers to remain in a vehicle while it is inspected. One would hope incidents of the kind at Harwich might see more port operators willing to absorb the major initial capital investment and high running costs in order to demonstrate vigilance. The International Maritime Organisation has quoted anecdotal evidence that South Africa is seen as an onward departure point for container ships travelling to Europe Technological advances As a veteran correspondent in this sector, one thing that encourages me is seeing product developers operating in disparate areas in order to achieve the same goal. I recently spoke to a consultant friend who had completed a job at a high-security jail in New South Wales. He reported how, soon after vacating their truck for an inspection as they left the jail, contractors made an off-colour joke to the effect that they might have an inmate hidden in the vehicle. The prison governor happened to be watching and snapped back that his technology could detect the heartbeat of a mouse inside the truck. This was no exaggeration, and he was describing a system whereby micro sensors and cables detect miniscule movement and vibrations transmitted to the vehicle’s suspension system in a process that is similar to the electrocardiograms that medics use to measure the intensity of cardiac electrical signals. A limiting factor to this approach is that it is suited to cars and trucks by virtue of the fact that they are cushioned from the ground by shock absorbers, springs and rubber tyres so preventing the earth (or the sea in the case of a ship) from acting as a vibrational damper. Scrutinising cargo from boats or freight trains is eminently achievable, but the containers must first be removed and placed on a gantry frame device that replicates the cushioning effect of a road vehicle. Various technological approaches must be used in concert according to environment and the type of threat from stowaways and would-be illegal migrants. In the UK, the Home Office imposes mandatory fines of £2,000 on drivers for each stowaway and may also fine the vehicle’s owner. A plea of ignorance from the driver is not countenanced by authorities who expect general vigilance. A technology that can be used by both truck drivers and marine ports is measurement of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere of a suspect shipping container or lorry. Probes can be inserted into vehicles without alerting stowaways, and major manufacturers can measure CO2 at levels down to 10,000 parts per million. A distressing aspect to the plight of marine stowaways is that they frequently run out of water and food during their attempted journeys Curbing illegal immigration A distressing aspect to the plight of marine stowaways is that they frequently run out of water and food during their attempted journeys but must remain concealed in inaccessible hiding places. Currently, the port of Durban is a favourite destination for illegal migrants on journeys from South America, and while recent figures are not available, a staggering 32 stowaways were found in Durban in the months of March and April 2014 alone. The International Maritime Organisation has quoted anecdotal evidence that South Africa is seen as an onward departure point for container ships travelling to Europe. The United Kingdom remains a favoured destination, with illegal immigrants making final “short haul” journeys from northern France often in cars and small vans as opposed to lorries. The BBC has just reported that in the 12 months up to June 2015, a staggering 100 Britons have been jailed in France for people-smuggling through a single port, Calais. The security sector’s varied technical resources discussed here should easily outstrip the determination and ingenuity of people traffickers. However, in a time of budgetary austerity throughout the public sector, our industry must continually demonstrate to purchasing managers how evolving products can prevent major incidents such as the deaths at Tilbury, west London and Durban. The most disturbing thought is how many large-scale trafficking incidents (possibly involving risk to life) may be going undetected every day.
BIRD Aerosystems, a globally renowned provider of innovative defence technology and solutions, which protect the air, sea and land fleets of governments and related agencies, has delivered a complete ASIO Maritime Surveillance Task Force Solution to an undisclosed African government. ASIO Maritime Task Force Solution The ASIO Maritime Task Force Solution, provided to the undisclosed African nation, includes multiple Cessna Citation CJ3 aircraft that the company converted into Maritime Patrol Aircraft, together with BIRD's advanced mission management system (MSIS), which was also installed on a number of vessels, as well as at the naval HQ command. BIRD Aerosystems' ASIO Maritime Task Force Solution provides customers with an integrated Aerial-Naval-Land solution. It facilitates maritime and coastal surveillance, patrol and survey of borders and strategic assets, and Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) monitoring capabilities. Advanced mission management system ASIO Maritime Task Force Solution delivers an extremely powerful and flexible maritime patrol solution Leveraging BIRD's advanced mission management system (MSIS) for complete mission operational support, including planning, execution, debriefing, online mission updates, and complete situational awareness between all segments (airborne, naval and ground) within the task forces, the ASIO Maritime Task Force Solution delivers an extremely powerful, comprehensive and flexible maritime patrol solution, enabling efficient detection, tracking and interception of any suspicious activity at sea. Ronen Factor, the Co-Chief Executive Officer and Founder at BIRD Aerosystems, stated “BIRD's ASIO Maritime Task Force Solution, including the Cessna Citation CJ3 aircraft, will be used to defend the customer's territorial waters, with an emphasis on detecting illegal fishing, oil theft, and smuggling.” He adds, “Rapidly deployed in multiple configurations, ASIO enables even small crews to deliver detailed and comprehensive surveillance information, covering large geographic areas.”
BIRD Aerosystems, the pioneering developer of Airborne Missile Protection Systems (AMPS) and Special Mission Aircraft Solutions (ASIO), has won a contract for the delivery and installation of its AMPS-MLRD solution, that includes the patented SPREOS DIRCM, on a customer VIP and Military aircraft in Africa. The SPREOS will be installed as part of the AMPS-MLRD solution on several types of aircraft. About AMPS-MLRD solution AMPS-MLRD missile protection system provides the most enhanced protection for military and civilian aircraft against the growing threat of ground to air missiles including MANPADS, Laser guided threats, and radar-guided threats. The system is designed to automatically detect, verify, and foil SAM attacks through the effective use of countermeasure decoys (Flares and Chaff) and additionally by Directional Infrared Countermeasures (DIRCM) that jam the missile's IR seeker and protects the aircraft. SPREOS DIRCM system The AMPS-MLRD includes BIRD Aerosystems SPREOS, a patented DIRCM system that provides Missile Verification, Tracking, and Jamming. As part of the program, all aircraft will be installed with the SPREOS (Self Protection Radar Electro-Optic System) that combines a Semi-Active Dual Band Radar and Directional IR Countermeasure. Sensors, interrogation and tracking Queued by the Missile Warning Sensors, SPREOS points towards the suspected threat, performs a Doppler based interrogation to confirm the existence of a valid threat, and extract its key parameters. In addition, SPREOS precisely tracks and points an advanced 5th generation solid-state Quantum Cascade Laser (QCL) towards the threat for the most effective jamming of the missile while continually assessing the jamming effectiveness. Advanced protection solution Ronen Factor, Co-Chief Executive Officer and Founder at BIRD Aerosystems: “After a careful examination process, the customer chose BIRD Aerosystems' SPREOS and the AMPS-MLRD to protect its VIP and military fleet.” “BIRD Aerosystems' AMPS with the SPREOS DIRCM makes it possible to identify and intercept high-velocity threat attacks such as enemy MANPADS and eliminate all of the systems False Alarms. Being the most advanced protection solution in the market today, SPREOS enables our customers to detect threats in a way that has never been possible before, ensuring optimal aircraft protection tailored to defeat each specific threat.”
Globally renowned sensor solutions provider, HENSOLDT will equip the Norwegian Coast Guard vessel “Svalbard” with the latest version of its TRS-3D naval radar and MSSR 2000 IIFF System. This is already the second upgrade contract from the Norwegian Defence Materiel Agency as HENSOLDT is already under contract to equip the three new Arctic Coast Guard Vessels in the P6615 Program with the upgraded radar and IFF system. TRS-3D naval radar system Under both contracts worth more than € 27 m HENSOLDT will deliver four TRS-3D radars including the latest solid-state technology and signal processing software and will deliver them from 2021, in parallel to the building program of the new Arctic Coast Guard vessels. The TRS-3D includes a secondary radar MSSR 2000 I for Identification-friend-or-foe (IFF). It operates all current IFF modes, including the latest “Mode S/Mode 5 Level 1/2” standard answering the most recent NATO requirements. Our TRS-3D naval radar is an extremely reliable radar, particularly suited for littoral missions" “Our TRS-3D naval radar is an extremely reliable radar, particularly suited for littoral missions”, said HENSOLDT CEO Thomas Müller. “We are taking the upgrade contract of the Norwegian Coast Guard as proof of the customer’s satisfaction with our product and services”. Air and sea surveillance TRS-3D is a three-dimensional multimode naval radar for air and sea surveillance. It includes the ability to correlate plots and tracks of targets with the MSSR 2000 I identification system for automatic identification of vessels and aircraft which is essential to avoid friendly fire and to establish a comprehensive situation picture. It is used for automatically locating and tracking all types of air and sea targets and safe guidance of on-board helicopters. Thanks to its signal processing technologies, the TRS-3D is particularly suited for the early detection of low flying or slow moving objects under extreme environmental conditions. Naval surveillance and security More than 50 units of the radar are in operation with naval forces around the world. Among the ships equipped are frigates and corvettes of the German Navy, the US Coast Guard National Security Cutters and the "Squadron 2000" patrol boats of the Finnish Navy.
EchoGuard receives FCC Equipment Authorisation allowing widespread deployment of the radar for security, surveillance, and airspace management applications. EchoGuard radar Echodyne, the manufacturer of innovative, high-performance radars for government and commercial markets, announces that it has received approval from the FCC for widespread deployment of its EchoGuard radar for radiolocation and radionavigation in the United States. FCC Equipment Authorisation allows the radar to be used throughout the US for ground, airspace surveillance The FCC Equipment Authorisation allows the radar to be used throughout the United States for ground and airspace surveillance applications that detect and track potential security threats with high accuracy and for ground-based airspace management applications that ensure safe navigation of commercial drone missions. Electronically Scanning Array radar Echodyne's innovative metamaterials technology and powerful software combine to create an electronically scanning array (ESA) radar in a compact, solid-state format at commercial price points for the very first time. The radar has been demonstrating award-winning performance for government, law enforcement, security, and UAS / UTM customers for some time via experimental licenses. "We are excited that EchoGuard has received this authorisation allowing its widespread adoption in the US," said Eben Frankenberg, CEO of Echodyne. "With the growing number of troubling drone incursions at airports, stadiums, and other facilities, there is tremendous demand for high-performance radar sensors. Tackling drone threats Eben adds, "Our innovative radar technology and software greatly increases the ability for security systems to accurately detect and track drone threats, as well as improves ground tracking of people, vehicles, and vessels. Our radar outperforms every other radar in its class, is priced for commercial markets, and has proven to be the best mid-range surveillance radar in the market." Features of the EchoGuard high-performance radar include: True electronic beam-steering with market-leading C-SWaP attributes; Long-range detection with high reliability and accurate tracking of multiple, concurrent air and ground targets; and Easy integration into sensor fusion and security systems for unmatched 3D situational awareness.
The sensor solutions provider HENSOLDT is equipping the second batch of the German Navy’s K130 corvettes with its TRS-4D Rotator naval radar and its MSSR 2000 I friend-or-foe identification system (IFF). Only six months after the order was placed, the company has now successfully passed the factory acceptance test by the German procurement authority BAAINBw for the second system. “With the TRS-4D, the corvettes are getting an extremely powerful radar system,” said HENSOLDT’s CEO Thomas Müller. “Since we have started to produce our radars in series a short time ago, we have been able to reduce the time required for delivery to our customers considerably.” Order for seven TRS-4D radars On board the new F125 frigate, the TRS-4D is used in a configuration comprising four fixed planar arraysHENSOLDT has orders for seven radars which are intended for five ships and two land-based systems and are to be delivered by 2022. The company had previously equipped the first K130 batch with its proven TRS-3D radar. For the second batch, the TRS-4D has now been ordered to be supplied in a version comprising a mechanically rotating antenna (TRS-4D Rotator), which is also under contract for the U.S. Navy’s littoral combat ship (LCS). On board the new F125 frigate, the TRS-4D is used in a configuration comprising four fixed planar arrays. This radar system is part of a family of products which also includes ground-based air defence radar, TRML-4D. It thus benefits from shorter production cycles, continuous product improvements as well as advantages in stock levels of spare parts and training. Quick detection and tracking of targets The TRS-4D Rotator has been designed to be used for anti-aircraft and anti-surface operations. Its rotating antenna combines mechanical and electronic azimuth scanning, which allows targets to be detected and tracked very quickly. Thanks to its higher sensitivity, the AESA radar allows more precise detection, especially of small and manoeuvering objects, as well as faster confirmation of the target, which means that the ship crew has more time to respond to threats. The system includes an MSSR 2000 I secondary radar for friend-or-foe identification (IFF) The radar can be specifically programmed according to the customer’s needs, and its characteristics can be changed via the software to match new requirements that arise during its useful life. The system also includes an MSSR 2000 I secondary radar for friend-or-foe identification (IFF), which complies with all IFF standards, even the latest ‘Mode S / Mode 5’. This is all the more important as all NATO troops and their allies are currently in the process of converting their IFF systems to Mode 5. The Mode 5 capability enables the troops to take part in joint and combined operations with NATO and other allied forces.
With its capacity of 32 million tons per year and water frontage of 6 kilometres, Chernomorsk sea port is one of the largest transport terminals in Ukraine, providing trade links with more than 100 countries all over the world. This port is a part of Eurasian transport corridor connecting the Western European countries, Ukraine, Georgia and the Asian countries. Its territory embodies the unique multimodal terminal that serves railway-ferry and auto-ferry lines as well as roll-on/roll-off vessels. The mission was to implement round-the-clock monitoring of the port territory and port waters in order to detect violations and prevent them. Monitoring in challenging light conditions PTZ cameras with integrated Axis Lightfinder technology are used for monitoring Experts from Inlimited suggested fitting the port with thermal technology platforms using 11 Axis network thermal cameras aboard (including models with two sensors: optic and thermal). PTZ cameras with integrated Axis Lightfinder technology are used, among others, for monitoring in challenging light conditions with low object contrast or difficult light sources. Thermal network cameras support guard tour function that can be used for continuous monitoring of a particular area according to the preset guard tour. In the context of modernisation, the existing port security system was extended with the following video surveillance solutions: computer-aided continuous visual monitoring of the water frontage, the adjacent port area and the port waters of Sukhyi Estuary, the area along the port perimeter as well as monitoring of vehicles (license plate recognition) and approaches to the mounting locations of the main cameras. Integrated video surveillance Centralised security service control centre offer video analysis capabilities. Video surveillance solutions integrated into a single software and hardware platform provide high-quality digital video real time record and store the archive for a minimum of 30 days. The integrator considered all the challenging conditions that cameras may encounter at sea and in the maritime area Integrated video surveillance and alarm system modernisation project developed by Inlimited Ltd. for Chernomorsk sea port is of strategic importance for the customer since it is aimed at increasing the reliability of the guard tours and critical infrastructure of the port and its entire water area. When developing the architectural concept, the integrator considered all the challenging conditions that cameras may encounter at sea and in the maritime area, such as hurricane hazards, lightning strikes, salt air impact, as well as restricted visibility due to fog, heavy rain, snowfall and direct sunlight. Installation of PTZ network cameras Thermal platforms with Axis PTZ network cameras installed on the top became the ultimate solution for the port. Optical and thermal sensors combined into one system is the specific feature of bispectral modules. With this capability, such a device can substitute a significant number of conventional optical cameras and partially the security alarm system. Hence, the extensive territory of the port was covered by turntables with a total of 11 Axis network cameras: bispectral, optical and outdoor. Due to the intelligent capabilities of Axis network cameras, a real-time detection signal is automatically transferred to operator screen, immediately providing a very clear image of an object and ensuring reliable detection under any visibility and weather conditions. Moreover, the system can also detect suspicious objects even before an intrusion attempt. Recognising person, car or watercraft We chose to go with Axis cameras because they are flexible and yet can be customised to solve particular problems"Automatic systems facilitate the work of security service operators displaying only actual violations, which helps to minimise the percentage of false responses. With this intelligent system, it is possible to immediately recognise a person, car or small-sized watercraft as well as detect possible smoke spread and other abnormal situations. Thus, the security staff has extra time to provide quick response. The video surveillance and alarm system of Chernomorsk sea port is integrated with IP-video control system Milestone Xprotect and vehicle license plate recognition system VIT AutoCode. “We chose to go with Axis cameras because they are flexible and yet can be customised to solve particular problems. Axis network cameras gained an excellent reputation as a part of the video surveillance system currently operating at the port and for this reason, we selected them again for additional security platforms,” noted the Chernomorsk sea port security service.
Round table discussion
Higher pixel count is better. It’s a basic tenet of the video surveillance market, or at least it is the implication as manufacturers continue to tout their latest products offering ever-higher pixel counts. But the reality is more nuanced, as our Expert Panel Roundtable panelists explain this week. Pixel count shouldn’t be seen as an end unto itself, but rather as a factor in determining what camera is applicable to which application. Pixel count is just one factor of several to consider, and the needs of the application must rule all decisions. We asked this week’s panel: How many megapixels are enough? At what point does additional resolution not matter, or not make economic sense?